20 Years of Racing in Bahrain

by Kristian Harrison

Thu, 04 April 2024

20 Years of Racing in Bahrain

The Bahrain International Circuit (BIC), renowned as The Home of Motorsport in the Middle East, celebrated a monumental milestone with its 20th Anniversary Bahrain Grand Prix, culminating in a weekend of unparalleled racing and entertainment that captivated a record sell-out crowd.

Drawing in a staggering 37,000 spectators on race day alone, surpassing the previous year’s attendance of 36,000, the historic event marked the highest single-day turnout in the race’s history. The fervour surrounding the Grand Prix extended beyond borders, with a total of 100,000 racing enthusiasts converging at the circuit over the course of the weekend, eclipsing the 99,500 attendance figure from the previous year. Notably, the event also attracted more than 11,000 international fans, setting yet another record and underscoring its global appeal. 

Under the spectacular, gleaming lights of the Bahrain International Circuit, the atmosphere reached fever pitch as Dutchman Max Verstappen stormed to victory in Sakhir. The three-time defending drivers’ world champion started from pole and dominated the 57-lap event, celebrating 20 Years of a Modern Classic as the first-ever F1 Saturday night race in Bahrain. 

As a spectacular fireworks display dotted the night sky, Verstappen crossed the finish line with a 22-second gap, leading Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez to a sensational one-two. They were joined on the podium by Carlos Sainz of Ferrari. 

Away from the on-track action, the event saw the widest raft of entertainment programmes yet. The incredible line-up of colourful attractions included live performances by superstar artists, stage shows featuring world-renowned cartoon characters, daring circus acts, thrilling carnival rides, lively roaming performers and much more. 

The weekend was headlined by global superstar DJ and producer Diplo, who wowed audiences as they danced the night away in the post-race concert. 

Reflecting on the triumphant event, Arif Rahimi, Chairman of Bahrain International Circuit, conveyed his heartfelt congratulations to Max Verstappen on his remarkable win, which served as a fitting tribute to the circuit’s two-decade legacy in Formula 1. 

“The race weekend has offered a fitting tribute to our 20 years in Formula 1,” Mr. Rahimi remarked. “The success of the event acknowledges the enduring popularity of the sport in Bahrain, the wider region and beyond. It is an exciting prospect to witness the growth and development of the event in the years to come, buoyed by the overwhelming support and enthusiasm of our fans. Already, thousands of early bird tickets have been purchased for our race in 2025. 

“We can’t wait for next year!”
As the curtain fell on the 20th Anniversary Bahrain Grand Prix, it became clear that the event had not only showcased the pinnacle of motorsport excellence but had also underscored Bahrain’s position as a premier destination for international sporting events, promising an exhilarating future for Formula 1 enthusiasts worldwide.